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Woman holding her neck shoulder and back in pain from trigger points

Trigger Point Injection Q & A


What is a Trigger point?

Trigger points are specific, concentrated, hyper-responsive areas found within tense muscle bands. These points may elicit pain when compressed and frequently lead to referred pain, tenderness, and motor issues. Trigger point injections have been well established as a non-surgical option for addressing various musculoskeletal conditions, including carpal tunnel syndrome, tennis elbow, myofascial pain, and fibromyalgia.

What is a Trigger Point Injection?

A trigger point injection (TPI) involves administering a direct injection into the trigger point or "knot" for pain management. The injection may contain an anesthetic like lidocaine (Xylocaine) or bupivacaine (Marcaine), a combination of anesthetics, natural pain relieving compounds like Sarapin, or solely a corticosteroid (cortisone medication) with or without lidocaine. This injection renders the trigger point inactive, providing relief from pain. At Bayshore Medical Group, our focus is on assisting individuals in minimizing the reliance on corticosteroids and surgery for pain management.

How are Trigger Point Injections Performed?

Our nurse practitioner will begin by marking the skin above the designated point and ensuring proper skin hygiene. A cooling spray might be applied to numb the injection area. Subsequently, a fine needle is carefully inserted into the trigger point. If you experience a slight muscle "twitch" at this stage, it indicates that the trigger point has been reached. A small quantity of medication is then injected to anesthetize the point and disperse the tension in the "knot." Although lidocaine is commonly used for numbing, our nurse practitioner may opt for an alternative based on your medical history, such as saline or Sarapin.

How Do I Know If I Need Trigger Point Injections?

An indication for requiring a TPI injection is the presence of a palpable tender area that generates a consistently referred pain pattern. Additional symptoms may encompass episodic or chronic headaches, back pain, groin pain, reduced range of motion, myofascial pain, and temporomandibular joint pain.

If you encounter any of the mentioned symptoms, opting for TPI can prove highly advantageous. It's essential to recognize that certain patients may have multiple trigger points in their body that require treatment. Each trigger point is distinct, with variations in location from person to person.

Book an appointment with Bayshore Medical Group to determine if you are the right candidate for trigger point injection treatment.

Woman grabbing her neck, traps, shoulders, and back in pain from trigger points

What Can I Expect When Having a Trigger Point Injection?

Once you are comfortably positioned on the procedure table, our skilled professionals will identify and sanitize the skin over the trigger point. The practitioner will then apply a local anesthetic for pain reduction and gently manipulate the trigger point to prevent movement. Subsequently, an injection containing lidocaine (Xylocaine) or bupivacaine (Marcaine) is administered to the targeted area.

Following the injection, the practitioner may recommend specific physical therapy exercises to engage and stretch the muscles, particularly beneficial for addressing trigger points associated with myofascial pain syndrome.

Post-treatment, you may encounter temporary mild symptoms like swelling, dizziness, slight bleeding, and lightheadedness. These effects typically subside over time, allowing you to resume your daily activities as guided by our experts.

What Conditions Do Trigger Point Injections Treat?

At Bayshore Medical Group, our approach involves employing a trigger point injection procedure to address a diverse array of myofascial trigger points, commonly known as referred pain. These trigger points, which induce tenderness and pain in the surrounding muscles, are often felt as small bumps or knots when touched.

The trigger point injection is particularly effective in treating the following muscles:

  • Gluteus medius (a muscle in your hip)

  • Masseter (a muscle in your jaw)

  • Temporalis (a muscle on the sides of your head)

  • Levator scapulae (a muscle on the sides of your neck)

The treatment helps in reducing muscle pain and tenderness while alleviating motor dysfunction.

How Long Does the Relief from Trigger Point Injections Last?

Trigger point injection stands out as a widely sought-after pain relief intervention, delivering prompt results. The majority of our patients report pain relief within 24 to 72 hours following the treatment. Nevertheless, the timeframe for relief may vary, influenced by factors like the size and severity of the myofascial trigger point. Typically, the alleviation of pain can endure for approximately a month, after which another injection may be recommended if needed.

Schedule an Appointment with Trigger Point Injections Specialists in Annapolis

The pain caused by trigger points can escalate if not treated quickly. If you have severe pain, we recommend consulting one of our specialists who has extensive knowledge and advanced training in providing trigger point injections. At Bayshore Medical Group we offer trigger point injections to help alleviate myofascial pain and other types of acute pain. Contact us today at 410-263-4171 to schedule an appointment for trigger point injections in Annapolis, Md.

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